For this vast audience which extends probably two - and I'm pushing - three towns
(interlude: Hey O.H. I don't know if I consider "C" a town !),
I saw something today, albeit a day late, on the Mets.com that really shows how much people love the game of baseball. I'd like to share it with you, and then give you my short, elevator assessment of why this scribe loves the game:
Expressions of love for baseball: http://newyork.mets.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070213&content_id=1801299&vkey=news_nym&fext=.jsp&c_id=nym
Good, huh? Nice cross section of folk.
I can tell you this, I love baseball as long as I can remember...4 years old, first glove, watching the Mets and (CHOKE - do I say) Yankees with my late Uncle "T McP" - Keep in mind here, the age of 5 is considered the age of reason, so I had no idea what I was doing watching the pinstripers (more like Candy Stripers then). In any sense, the thrill of opening up baseball cards with the chalky gum. The thrill of getting a Met in the pack - didn't care if he sucked or was a star - IT WAS A MET! Smelling the grass of a cut fresh field...seeing my idols play from a far seat away...MEETING some real live ball players at baseball camp at the age of 8...getting autographs...having Gene Michael teaching me how to swing a bat - WHO CARED if he was a .220 hitter...talking baseball with friends...talking MORE baseball with friends and doing more and more of the latter and former...crunching stats...saying this player was better than that player (he was)...watching the instant replays...he was out...no, well, hmmm....second look, he looked safe...n0....no...he was clearly out....listening to the sound of the bat hitting the ball...listening to the thud of the ball hit the catchers mitt...arguing managers and umpires ejecting them...only a few games out of first place...IN first place...STAYING in first place...
Now, synthesize all these things into one - there's a small fraction of what baseball is.
I have one blog. This. It's about baseball. While I do other things in life, the gift of 3 hour games every day from April to October is what I enjoy. And, as I ranted before, Spring Training has NOW started...
I Love it. Mets.
Across in the Bronx...I never write about the Yankees, but something caught my eye in the newspaper on the commute home. Mariano Rivera is cackling about his salary and being respected - kind of creating the image that he's the only one that can do what he's doing. Time to stop and get humbled by the following quote which a reporter used: "The cemetery is full of men who are irreplaceable."